MENU

Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

Twitter Permanently Banned Conservative Pundit Jesse Kelly

Kelly says the social media site offered no explanation, which would violate its own policies.

KellyScreenshot via Fox NewsJesse Kelly, a conservative writer, radio host, and failed Republican political candidate, is no longer welcome on Twitter: The social media site permanently banned him on Sunday, for reasons unknown.

Many on the right saw this as evidence that Twitter is unfairly silencing conservatives; others were neither surprised nor particularly sad to see Kelly disappear. Twitter is a private company and can ban anyone it wants, of course. But it would be helpful if the site administrators explained what exactly Kelly did to merit such draconian measures—especially if Twitter wishes to put a damper on the right-wing notion that social media censorship is a serious issue meriting federal intervention.

It's not clear which tweets got Kelly in trouble, or if it was something else. The decision to ban him could have been the result of baseless complaints, or even an error on Twitter's part. Kelly told other conservative writers that he was left completely in the dark, reportedly receiving the following message from Twitter: "Your account was permanently suspended due to multiple or repeat violations of the Twitter rules. The account will not restored. Please do not respond to this email as replies and new appeals for this account will not be monitored."

If this was truly the full extent of Twitter's communication with Kelly, then the social media platform has violated its own policy. As the writer Jeryl Bier pointed out, Twitter's terms claim that a permanent ban will be accompanied by an explanation of which policies were violated "and which content was in violation."

Kelly's tough-guy shtick is fairly obnoxious. He called Sen. Jeff Flake (R–AZ) a coward for siding with "the enemy" (Democrats) and delaying the vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. He also fantasized about a second American civil war, refusing to submit passively to "the liberal utopian nightmare of 57 genders." But if demonizing your political opponents is a crime on Twitter, there are millions more accounts to ban. To my knowledge, Kelly hasn't engaged in the kind of targeted harassment or direct advocacy of violence that should earn a rebuke from the platform. And if he has, Twitter should point it out.

I say should, because this free service is not obligated to humor its conservative users' desire for transparency and fairness, no matter how loudly they complain. But the idea that major tech companies are beholden to progressive goals is becoming a major talking point on cable news; absent proper justification, Twitter's treatment of Kelly will add fuel to this fire.

Photo Credit: Fox News

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Twitter is a platform for shitheads.

    Twitter commenters are among America's most horrible people. The influencers they follow probably deserve what they get for pandering to shitheads.

    They can all go screw each other.

    Moral of the story? Why invest any more of your time and effort building name recognition or brand consciousness on Twitter when it can all be taken away in an instant by of arbitrary rules?

    Whatever the future holds for social media, it won't be Twitter.

    P.S. Facebook is a platform for naive shitheads.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    It's amusing when someone with hundreds of thousands of tweets clears out their Twitter history. Reminds me of Ozymandias.

    "Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"

  • Quixote||

    Did he use any inappropriately deadpan "parody," or tweet in the name of any university presidents? That would certainly be cause enough to arrest him, let alone close down his account. See the documentation of our nation's leading criminal "satire" case at:

    https://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Twitter is really just entertainment. Goofing around. Even Trump would probably agree with that.
    Most everyone is taking themselves too seriously when discussing entertainment social media platforms like Twitter.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    ^This. Sometimes it's amusing to argue about but it sure isn't going to change my life.

  • CLM1227||

    Someone tried to claim that Twitter would start a real war with a major country.

    I said any world leader who takes Twitter that seriously is not deserving of respect.

    Social media in general panders to our worst instincts. Kindness and generosity are boring, though laudable. Likes are generated by snark, contempt, and well placed attacks. The less you care, the more likes you get.

    What a horrid place to take seriously.

  • Qsl||

    But then again, so is the news, and have you seen the amount of hand wringing that has taken place over who and what has access? I recall some special investigation going on concerning some focused goofing around from distant lands. It's serious business.

    There is a chameleon like character to the arguments that morphs depending on who is most offended at the time. It's propaganda. It's censorship. It's fake news. It's entertainment. It's meddling with the elections. It's right of association.

    My head spins trying to keep track of it all.

  • El Oso||

    I call them Twitter Twats...

  • Tony||

    I don't think libertarians get to bitch about the government requiring businesses to accommodate people and then bitch about a private company not accommodating people.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    It boils down to use pointing out the poor customer service on social media.

    I remember when only people with Harvard email address were allowed to get a Facebook account. After bragging that Obama was the first president to be brilliant enough to win with a social media campaign and complaining that Trump was the first president evil enough to win with a social media campaign, social media companies are returning to their exclusive roots. Why do we grant them the privilege to import labor via visa programs that warehouse owners cannot avail themselves of?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The difference between must and should.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    "I don't think libertarians get to bitch about..."

    Tough. Libertarians get to bitch about anything they want.

  • CatoTheChipper||

    They don't in Tony's utopia.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    Is this Red Tony or Fascist Tony?

  • Tony||

    There's an understood "without being big fat hypocrites."

  • epsilon given||

    The hypocrisy isn't nearly as strong as you suppose.

    For one thing, there's nothing hypocritical about calling out a company for not abiding by it's own rules. Indeed, considering that contract enforcement is one of the few roles of government many libertarians accept, there's not even hypocrisy in libertarians hoping that Twitter gets sued.

    There's even less hypocrisy involved in certain conservatives calling for government action, because conservatives (just like liberals, I might add) believe that certain conditions *require* government intervention.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano and his multiple personality disorder on display again.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    The fact that Twitter is a private company--which libertarians acknowledge--does not mean that the company ought to be immune to criticism. You see, unlike you, when we criticize a private company we don't call for men with guns to enforce our views.

  • Tony||

    You want men with guns to force gays out of cakeshops.

  • Rossami||

    Really? Under what twisted interpretation of Masterpiece Cake do you find that conclusion?

  • Jack Klompus Magic Ink||

    You are a flaming fucking retard.

  • JesseAz||

    The problem is that government reduced the criminal and civil liabilities of Twitter and Facebook for them being "neutral" dumbfuck.

  • epsilon given||

    Indeed. Twitter gets to do whatever they want, but every time they ban a conservative for behavior X, and ignore the liberals doing behavior X, they lose a little bit of credibility in their claim of being neutral.

  • CatoTheChipper||

    Tony conflates "bitching about" violations of the freedom of association by the state with "bitching about" the behavior of private actors in the exercise of their freedom of association. These obviously are entirely different things. Because the progressive state holds so much promise for a good national socialist like Tony, I know it's hard for him to tell the difference.

  • epsilon given||

    Who's demanding special rights for Christians? Laws that require special accommodations, and forbid discrimination, are forbidden by the 1st Amendment's protection of free association -- and are just as evil as Jim Crow laws, and just as unConstitutional, for the same reason.

    Seriously, if gays were simply interested in freedom, and didn't want to ram their lifestyle choices down everyone's throats, the proper response to a baker who feels that baking a cake violates his conscience would be "We apologize for making you uncomfortable; we'll ask someone else to bake a cake for us. While we're here, why don't we pick up a box of donuts?"

  • Wizard4169||

    There's nothing un-libertarian about bitching about business policies that we don't like. There is nothing in libertarian philosophy that says you can't criticize people or try to persuade them to change behavior that you don't like. If self-proclaimed libertarians were to lobby the state to force private businesses to change policies they don't like, that would be hypocritical.

    This is an idea that I just cannot seem to get through most people's heads, no matter how big a (strictly metaphorical!) clue bat I use: saying "X shouldn't be illegal" doesn't mean "I like X!", and saying "I don't like X" doesn't mean I think the state should forcibly forbid X.

  • DenverJ||

    Huh. I was gonna make a case for public utilities type classification, how libertarianism isn't anarchy, government of the public greens, etc.
    But you know what? It is at private company, and if that company wants to purposely refuse service to half of the population... well, let's watch and see how it plays out.
    That's my argument against public accomadation laws, too. Money talks and bullshit walks, que no?

  • sharmota4zeb||

    +1 DenverJ

  • damikesc||

    I would argue, however, that if a company has an expressed policy on how to handle a situation --- they should be obligated to abide by their own expressed policy.

    However, conservatives really should stop providing Twitter free material with which they can attempt to monetize their service. Without people writing for them for free, what the hell does Twitter have?

  • Bill||

    Read the original article on which you are supposedly commenting.

  • AustinRoth||

    The railroads were private companies at one time. The phone company was a private company at one time. The electric companies were private at one time. And so on.

    The whole point of anti-monopolistic action by the government is when specific companies come to dominate an entire industry, and run their companies as fiefdoms unaccountable to the general population and to the detriment of a significant portion of the public.

    So, Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc., all fit that definition these days, and should be reigned in. IMHO.

  • Juice||

    Phone companies have been private for a long time and every electric company I've ever sent a bill to has been private.

  • damikesc||

    If phone companies started ending calls when they didn't like the content, rest assured, you'd see how non-private they actually are.

  • AustinRoth||

    Correct. Or electric companies deciding to cut your power because of your political views, transportation companies refusing passage to those with unpopular views, etc.

    To pretend that Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc., do not now hold a position central to modern communications is unsupportable. If you are going to stop being just a common carrier and decide you get to determine what content is allowed (outside of those forbidden by law), then you are a publisher, and I think soon the courts will agree. Then the litigation fun will really start.

  • mlwjr||

    Private, yes but they are highly regulated.

  • Juice||

    Ok, but Austin said they weren't private at all.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Most of the transcontinental railroads were mercantilist corporate/government partnerships. There was only one that that was truly private, the Great Northern, if memory serves.

  • Wizard4169||

    Ye gods, I get so tired of explaining this: governments create and maintain monopolies, not protect people from them. Absent the use of force, the only way to create and keep a monopoly is to provide better, cheaper service than any competitor, forever. And if someone could actually manage that, then no one would be harmed, so who cares?

    Once, there was a phone company, which the government regulated. The result was glacially slow innovation and improvement. Why change as long as your current model makes a profit? As for customers, they could like it or lump it, but they couldn't choose an alternative. Now there are multiple phone companies, so each has to supply something their customers want, or risk losing business to competitors. Flawed as the current telecom market is, I'll take it over a return to the era of Ma Bell any day.

  • Wizard4169||

    Utilities are (mostly) government-created monopolies. Since they have no competition, all they have to do is provide service that's just good enough to keep too many people from complaining. They have little motive to innovate or take any chances. In the sadly rare cases where there is competition, service tends to be vastly better. (Just one example: I was always a little puzzled by horror stories about Comcast, when they've always treated me pretty well. Then one day it hit me: in the town where I live, there are genuine alternatives. I can tell Comcast to FOAD any day, so they have to treat me well if they want to keep my business.)

    I frequently hear people whine about how there are no alternatives to Twitter or Facebook or whatever. This is simply not true. There are other services. If you're too lazy to look for them, that's your own problem and doesn't entitle you to have the state force Twitface to conform to your desires. The more the big services alienate their users, the more competitors will grow. If, OTOH, government steps in to regulate, the most likely result is to lock in the current leaders indefinitely. The likely result would be stagnation and just-good-enough service.

    And, hey, as long as I'm ranting, I might as well indulge my inner pedant. Reign is what a king does. (Nice simple mnemonic for you there.) When you want to restrain something, you rein them in. That's rein, no "n", as in the straps you use to steer a horse.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Yes, they have every right to be another Democratic Underground, but they have to be open and transparent about it.

    If they claim to be an open service welcoming of views from across the spectrum and they aren't then they're committing fraud, plain and simple.

  • ThomasD||

    Twitter is rapidly headed to a condition where the thought police will only be have leftist speech to police. Having succumbed to the control urge there is simply no way they will be able to stop it. Nobody will have the ability to say 'this far and no further.' Some may try, but the identity mob will eat them alive.

    It's a death spiral of their own choosing.

  • Dan S.||

    I say should, because this free service is not obligated to humor its conservative users' desire for transparency and fairness, no matter how loudly they complain.

    If they have made a public commitment to do so (and it doesn't involve the word "humor"), don't they incur an obligation to follow the rules they said they would follow?

  • Wizard4169||

    Twitter's terms claim that a permanent ban will be accompanied by an explanation of which policies were violated "and which content was in violation."


    If the terms they offered and users agreed to said that users would get an explanation for why they got banned, but then Twitter banned people without said explanation, then Twitter was indeed violating their own terms, and users have a valid complaint.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    If social Media sites like Twitter are going to 'edit' content they deem offensive, without sticking strictly to content that violates the law, then they are editors, not merely hosts. That means they have to take responsibility for what they allow to be posted, and can be sued for it. They currently operate under the theory that, since they are hosts, and do not actively oversee and approve of the content they host, they cannot be held responsible for it.

    No need to have the State come up with some elaborate law to meet the case. Just withdraw the legal protection for which they no longer qualify, and let the vultures gather.

    I don't think they'll like that trade.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Yeah, bans like these make me wonder why websites complained about the new regulations that hold them liable for facilitating child abuse. On the one hand, they didn't make noise before last year when they said that their protections for children are sufficient. Then when the law changes to make them liable for abuse, they complain that it's unreasonable to expect them to guarantee that level of protection. Then they make no qualms about protecting grown adults from exposure to right-wing political opinions. At this point, I'm ready to tell social media companies that I'm too busy to defend their 1st Amendment rights.

  • BruceMajors||

    One can easily see the day when people who work at and manage Twitter, Google, Facebook etc started getting dragged out of cars and homes, beaten in the streets, perhaps to disappear and never be seen again.

    Few will cry about their disappearances.

  • Sevo is my bitch||

    Especially your ilk. Who'll be the first against the wall.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Ooo how edgy!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    ...especially if Twitter wishes to put a damper on the right-wing notion that social media censorship is a serious issue meriting federal intervention.

    Dems control the House next year, so unless they start holding their leftwing violators to the same standards, they have little to worry about.

  • Sevo is my bitch||

    They already do, but Soave is paid to defend only right wing nuts. Koch libertarian.

    Best move to Gab.

    It was pleasant change of scenery for Laura Looner.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    This need to call out Kelly's behavior (and thereby distance oneself from his perceived wrongdoings) before defending his right to speak freely is so obnoxious. Twitter touts itself as a platform for the free expression of ideas. Its failure to comply with that mission statement and its exclusive commitment to silencing perceived wrongdoers on the right merits condemnation. It's not a First Amendment issue. It's a free speech issue, and the idea that libertarians should be fine with censorship, so long as it occurs on private property, is misguided.

    Also, why have so many Reason pieces lately treated Jeff Flake like a thoughtful political leader who eschews partisan labels?

  • Matthew Chalice||

    He refused to submit passively to "the liberal utopian nightmare of 57 genders"?

    Wow. What a monster.

  • Sevo is my bitch||

    The preceding was brought to you by the Jeff Flake of principled libertarians.

    Head over to Gab, assholes. Free speech forever.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    and the idea that libertarians should be fine with censorship, so long as it occurs on private property, is misguided.

    Huh. So I as a private property owner shouldn't have the right to censor guests on my own property?

  • Longtobefree||

    No. Go to the federal government web site and read all the civil rights laws.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    I asked if a private property owner shouldn't have the right, not about what the law actually says. It goes without saying that exercise of private property rights ought to be consistent with the NAP.

    If I invite you onto my property for, say, a party, and you start going on and on about how Donald Trump is so awesome, should I not have the right to tell you to shut up, and to throw you off my property?

  • JesseAz||

    Jeff... Go fund your quotes from the baker threads about gay marriage. You literally don't believe they have rights due to public accommodation... Or are you somehow arguing Twitter is immune to public accommodation?

    Consistency of your argument s would be nice.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    You go find any quote from me that defends the state forcing bakers to bake gay wedding cakes. You cannot.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    You can associate with whomever you want. Facebook can associate with whomever it wants. Twitter can associate with whomever it wants.

    The idea that I have to be fine with them doing whatever they want, because private property, is dumb. The idea that a large corporation can ban people for stupid reasons is also dumb. I never said that government intervention is the solution.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    Also, let's not pretend that FB and Twitter don't go after people the government doesn't like.

  • Matthew Chalice||

    Hey. Moron. I never called for government intervention.

    GFY, twit.

  • Sevo is my bitch||

    Somehow the loudest whining about the right of a private company to ban some asshole only happens when the asshole is a conservative.

    With commentary provided by a Koch libertarian.

    Maybe only leftists exist on Twitter.

  • damikesc||

    I think you forgot to name an example of when it happened to the Left.

    It's fairly early so I figured I'd give you tons of time to mention it.

  • JesseAz||

    The left has gotten suspensions for attacking more favored leftists groups. A feminist was just banned for not ignoring biology and talking about how transgenders do not really switch sexes.

  • damikesc||

    True. Lefties are banned for making other Lefties angry.

  • GeoffB1972||

    Twitter doesn't ban right-wingers. It just bans people who upset certain segments of the left. For example, you can be banned if your opposition to war extends to opposing wars Hillary Clinton started.

    It's funny, the first articles I saw protesting the ban of Alex Jones were by a few leftists who had been around long enough to know that the left wouldn't just want to shut up the right, but would also want to weed out dissent in the ranks.

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    Noticed the same....

  • ThomasD||

    "but would also want to weed out dissent in the ranks."

    They may think that is what will happen. But that notion presumes some sort of accepted dominant orthodoxy. And that's not how the modern left works.

    Cultural Marxism is boundless. There is no orthodoxy, it's all iconoclasm all the time. The LGBTQWERTY brigade is in the process of destroying third wave feminism, and there isn't a damn thing the feminists can do about it.

    Every day will be a brave new world.

  • damikesc||

    I find it odd that Reason never seems to find people demanding the government bankrupt businesses for not doing what they want "obnoxious".

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Like those people demanding that government bankrupt Facebook/Twitter for not doing what they want?

  • damikesc||

    Except nobody is demanding the government bankrupt them.

    Now, bankrupting a baker for not wanting to make a special cake --- THAT justifies bankruptcy, amirite?

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    "STEVE BANNON WANTS TO NATIONALIZE FACEBOOK AND GOOGLE'S DATA"

    http://www.vanityfair.com/news.....ter-google

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    To be fair, Steve Bannon isn't the only one who wants to bankrupt Facebook.

    "We need to nationalise Google, Facebook and Amazon."

    http://www.theguardian.com/com.....c-interest

  • damikesc||

    Who the fuck is Nick Srineck? And who listens to Bannon? Honestly.

    Rock solid data.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    "nobody is demanding the government bankrupt them"

    Huh

  • damikesc||

    Nobody is. Removing their carve out protections from the terrible DMCA because they are violating the carve out is simple justice.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Nobody is, huh?

  • JesseAz||

    You really do double down on dumb Jeff.

  • damikesc||

    Yes. Nobody still.

    Hell, "nationalizing" would make them better and more efficient, right? That's the claim with healthcare...

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    You really are shameless.

  • damikesc||

    Still no calls to bankrupt them. Twitter will go under on its own because it is useless. Most of the others...well, they need free content given to them to be worth anything.

  • JesseAz||

    First... Nationalizing isn't bankrupting idiot. Second they are talking about the data, not the platform. The data that Google Facebook et Al use to create profiles of users to sell to adverrtisers. The same profiles that contain confidential medical information based on illegal tracking to medical websites, as an example.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    So if the state seizes a firm's assets and takes over the operation of the business from the firm's owners, then that's materially different than bankrupting the firm. Huh.

    Second they are talking about the data, not the platform.

    "We need to nationalise Google, Facebook and Amazon."

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano loves slavery.

  • epsilon given||

    Why should there even be accomodation laws in the first place? They are a clear violation of freedom of association.

  • JesseAz||

    Who is asking to bankrupt Twitter or Facebook Jeff? They are asking to remove protections granted to then for being neutral. You are either dishonest or dumb.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano thinks he's not a shrieking little bitch.

  • Longtobefree||

    "Twitter is a private company, and can ban anyone it wants, of course."

    Just like a baker can select his customers, and restaurants can refuse blacks, right?

  • dantheserene||

    LTBF:
    You beat me by 14 minutes.

  • Juice||

    Pretty sure the people who run this site agree with that.

  • ThomasD||

    Customers who refuse to accept your terms of service are unruly.

    Or are you saying that some terms of service are more equal than others???

  • epsilon given||

    Because freedom of association is guaranteed, whereas public accommodation is not?

  • dantheserene||

    We really need to stop pretending Freedom of Association exists anymore. If bakers must violate their own religious beliefs to serve anyone, then companies like twitter don't get to pick and choose either. I don't like it, but since they forced it on us I'm no longer willing to let it be one-sided.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    This is such an immature attitude. "If I can't have my toys, I will make sure nobody will have any toys!"

    The correct solution is not to take away more liberty. The correct solution is to fight for everyone's liberty. That includes the liberty of cake bakers and the liberty of corporations.

  • dantheserene||

    That's an easy thing to say when your side isn't being affected. They make the rules, they get to follow them too. If they want to take a more pro-liberty stance, I'm all for it.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    No it's actually a difficult thing to say evidently, to stand up for everyone's liberties, left or right.

    Let me put it this way: if you don't want to respect their liberties, why should anyone care about your liberties?

  • damikesc||

    If you want to oppress my rights...i need to defend your right to oppress me?

    Makes sense.

    The only way to end a bad law is to make its advocates abide by it. If they dont have to, why change anything?

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Well that depends.

    Are you pro-liberty? Or are you just anti-left?

    Time to choose.

    The only way to end a bad law is to make its advocates abide by it.

    Huh. I can think of other ways to end bad laws that don't result in perpetuating injustice.

  • damikesc||

    If there arent negative repurcussions, things do not change.

    SCOTUS didnt desegregate schools. The National Guard did.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    The National Guard did *because* SCOTUS did.

    And look, desegregation of schools ended without forcing southern whites to live under the oppressive regime that they forced upon southern blacks. So much for "the only way to end a bad law is to apply it to its advocates".

    Gay marriage was legalized without forcing straight couples to have their marriage licenses revoked by the state.

    Sounds like you are just finding a way to rationalize revenge against your opponents.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    er, that should be "segregation of schools ended"

  • Juice||

    There was forced bussing for a long time and whites in the north and south hated it and felt oppressed by it.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Forced busing, while wrong on its own terms, was not equivalent to 'separate but equal'.

    If damikesc was right, the only way to end forced racial segregation of schools would have been to force southern whites to go to explicitly racially segregated crummy schools.

  • Juice||

    Forced busing, while wrong on its own terms, was not equivalent to 'separate but equal'.

    Didn't say it was. Whites weren't subject to the exact same form of oppression that blacks had been subject to previously, but it was a form of oppression in its own way. I guess I was making the point that undoing the oppression has usually involved some other form of oppression on the previously oppressed, usually as a form of retaliation or re-education.

  • damikesc||

    The National Guard did *because* SCOTUS did.

    And if they did not, SCOTUS was immaterial. The negative repurcussion opened the school. The realization that "Listen fuckers, we will MAKE you do this shit" is why they opened. It wasn't any "Seperate but equal is wrong" bullshit. It was men with guns.

    And look, desegregation of schools ended without forcing southern whites to live under the oppressive regime that they forced upon southern blacks.

    The Voting Rights regime was quite terrible and was terrible for a long time. Was it deserved? Probably. But to pretend it did not exist is silly.

    Gay marriage was legalized without forcing straight couples to have their marriage licenses revoked by the state.

    Just bankruptcy if you didn't applaud it. Much better.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Oh good Lord. Eisenhower did not wake up one morning and say "today I'll end segregated schools by sending out the National Guard". What precipitated his action was SCOTUS's ruling. Yes men with guns ultimately enforced SCOTUS' ruling but it was only as a result of SCOTUS itself ruling as they did.

    The Voting Rights Act is different from school desegregation. You're just throwing around a red herring here in the context of this discussion. And nobody has gone bankrupt for merely refusing to applaud a gay marriage.

    I've pointed out two instances now of ways to change unjust laws that didn't arise by forcing the law's advocates to live under the unjust laws that they advocated. There are more - like actually repealing laws by legislatures, jury nullification, etc. Fact is, you just want revenge against your opponents, and are using this "justice" rationale as a thin pretext for this.

  • John||

    What precipitated his action was SCOTUS's ruling. Yes men with guns ultimately enforced SCOTUS' ruling but it was only as a result of SCOTUS itself ruling as they did.

    Yes, the court rules and the exectutive enforces that ruling. That is how it works. Eisenhower could not have used those guns to do anything without a court ruling saying he could. You don't seem to understand how this stuff works.

  • damikesc||

    Oh good Lord. Eisenhower did not wake up one morning and say "today I'll end segregated schools by sending out the National Guard"

    True. He decided that he was going to make the state abide. If he did not, the SCOTUS decision would've been utterly irrelevant.

    Men with guns opened the schools. The SCOTUS wrote stuff.

    Yes men with guns ultimately enforced SCOTUS' ruling but it was only as a result of SCOTUS itself ruling as they did.

    Hardly. Eisenhower wanted an excuse to do it.

    You do realize that if it happened under, say, Truman --- the schools would've REMAINED segregated, right?

    And nobody has gone bankrupt for merely refusing to applaud a gay marriage.

    OR tried to bankrupt Masterpiece for PRECISELY that reason. He offered to sell them a cake. Just not to make a special one celebrating them. Therefore, the state sought to BANKRUPT the shop.

  • Seamus||

    What actually desegregated schools was the Nixon Administration's threat to cut off federal funds to Southern school districts that didn't get serious about complying with the law.

  • JesseAz||

    Jeff. You defended the state and the theory of public accommodation in the baker's cases...

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    I did? Care to point to where?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano knows about liars because he sees them all the time. It's called a mirror.

  • ThomasD||

    "This is such an immature attitude."

    LOL. 'We all play by the same set of rules' is 'immature' in Jefflandia.

    You really are a heaving mass of projection.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano bitchfits like a worthless sack of shit.

  • Alcibiades||

    Soon in Canada the media folks will get to be completely owned lackeys of the state and every news headline will also serve as a grant application as snouts get led, willingly, to the trough.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    But Net Neutrality! Or some other misguided egalitarian whining point.

  • JesseAz||

    They also banned a prominent liberal feminist who merely said that gender identity is bullshit. Trans activists got her banned last week.

  • ThomasD||

    Searching the internet is hard.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano lies, calls other people liars.

  • ||

    "Kelly's tough-guy shtick is fairly obnoxious."

    No disrespect Robby, but I don't really care what you think is 'obnoxious'.

    And Jack Dorsey is a shithead punk.

    How's that for obnoxiousness?

  • John||

    Then there is this

    I say should, because this free service is not obligated to humor its conservative users' desire for transparency and fairness, no matter how loudly they complain. But the idea that major tech companies are beholden to progressive goals is becoming a major talking point on cable news; absent proper justification, Twitter's treatment of Kelly will add fuel to this fire.

    There is no proper justification to suppor the claim that the tech firms are beholden to Progressive Goals, they just ban conservatives for no appearent reason and never do the same to progs.

    I don't think Robby even understands what a non sequiter that is. We really shouldn't attribute the things he writes to malace. Robby is just dumb.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Soave is a progressive disciple of Saul Alinsky who fully agrees with their goals; he merely disagrees with some of the tactics being used to achieve those goals.

    If you read his stuff carefully, almost every piece he writes is really just some variation on Alinsky's old admonition to his fellow travelers that it's more effective to don a suit and tie than a bandana and bandolier.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano knows about drooling because he does it all the time when furiously spamming his multiple personalities.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    I am sure communist twitter handles are a dime a dozen.

  • Red Tony||

    Did anybody notice the alt-text Robby had poking fun at himself? Nice one, Robby.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Twitter is a private company and can ban anyone it wants, of course.

    Although it's nothing more than a fantasy of mine, I'd like to see the reaction if the private backbone provider banned Twitter.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Oh wait, we kind of do have that reaction... after a fashion.

  • StackOfCoins||

    "But the idea that major tech companies are beholden to progressive goals is becoming a major talking point on cable news"
    At what point does a Reason writer's "idea" become fact? Pretending the MSM (both the old networks and the new series of tubes located in Seattle) don't carry water for progressive liberal ideas is to be willfully ignorant of history and reality.

  • Dillinger||

    who punishes Twitter for internal policy violations?

  • DarrenM||

    What's going to happen is that leftists will overrun Twitter as Conservatives go elsewhere. There will be increased divisiveness as the "tribes" separates themselves even more. The way social media is being run is exacerbating tension in society. It's best to get off social media altogether. This goes for Twitter, Facebook, Youtube comments, etc. Probably for any political site and the associated comments.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano gets ass-mad when he can't get in the last word.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano proves my point.

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    Dead thread-fucking AGAIN, Hihnsano?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano lies like usual.

  • posmoo||

    Twitter, Facebook, Google, and any internet provider with significant market share that censors political speech needs to have their defamation immunity pulled. They were given that immunity to foster free speech and they are rushing it. Let them play on a level playing field.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano calls others thugs while crying like a bitch about cyberbullying.

  • wreckinball||

    Except if it involves Russians on FB. Then all bets are off. It's an act of war (some moron congressmen actually said this) Call in the troops.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Why are you such a Dumbfuck Hihnsano, Dumbfuck Hihnsano?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Dumbfuck Hihnsano whines about cyber-bullies while desperately trying to get in the last word. (sneer)

  • ToddP||

    I was banned for simply correcting a liberal. I said nothing nasty at all. banned for life on two accounts. I only had these accounts for maybe a week. I decided not to bother creating another one. They win I guess.

  • Curly4||

    Yes Twitter is a private company and should be able to ban anyone that they choose. Also Twitter has no reason not to silence the right. Twitter's customers are all except the conservative right so if the conservative right is silenced the better for Twitter and political agenda.
    But there may be reason that even as private company that banning may not be legal since in the past there were many private organizations that ban certain people from being apart of, using services of these private companies. So it might very well contrary to federal regulations.
    If it does not then it is up to Twitter to make that choice. If the company is not interested in the revenue generated by the conservative right then they and all the other media could shut them out just because they don't like their politics.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Awww! I'm gonna MISS the Calico Cat and the Gingham Dog--but only after they're gone.

  • DontBsoSure||

    Ya think maybe the last sentence is a bit understated?

  • notreadyfortheshow||

    The funny thing is that Jesse Kelly is not suspended by Twitter.

    He was suspended. That much is true. But that suspension was reversed and Kelly then deactivated his own account and is pretending to be suspended.

    Any attempted navigation to a suspended Twitter profile results in an immediate redirect to a page that reads "Account suspended). That redirect is permanent. If you don't believe me, try it with any permanently suspended user

    Kelly's URL does not do that. Instead, the URL remains, and you are taken to an error page. That error page would only be seen in three cases: the profile or tweet URL never existed in the first place, or if the profile or tweet URL was deleted by the user.

    Kelly is not suspended.

  • wreckinball||

    It is a conspiracy. Twitter FB and Google seem to operate as a little cabal. There is definitely evidence of of possible anti-trust violations.

    Is it legal for a group of large companies to collude , proper use of the term in this case, to control the social marketplace?

    But we're worried about phantom Russians on FB?

  • Robert Crim||

    I'd support Mr. Kelly except that I cannot: Twitter has suspended my last account for denouncing Alexandria Ocasio Cortez for being the sticky-fingered little political bandit she is.

    I can take the opportunity here to denounce Mr. Soave's simplistic and extremist views on internet property rights. He claims that Twitter can do what it wants on "its" site; however, that is not exactly true. Twitter owns the underlying ADVERTISING platform -- THAT is what it created. But, to create that platform, it invited millions of users to create communications channels on that advertising platform, and stated succinctly, TWITTER DOES NOT OWN THESE CHANNELS (the users do).

    Twitter increasingly is attempting to become a Left-wing soapbox and reacts in an expected manner to those willing to call its vipers "vipers." And, suspending, either temporarily or permanently the accounts of people whose politics @jack doesn't like IS A TORT.

    So, if Mr. Kelly is listening, I suggest he get in touch with me, and perhaps together we can answer @Jack Dorsey's arrogance with a plethora of lawsuits designed to lighten his wallet by half a million dollars a pop.

    If nothing else, this will help to guide Republicans in Congress on what changes need to be made to put a stop to such censorship.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online